Thirteen Rising

by Romina Russell

Zodiac Series book 4

Thirteen Rising is the final installment in the wonderfully entertaining Zodiac series. I have loved this series and it is a series I will re-read now and again. The stories capture you and take you to a whole new world and the covers are so beautiful. This summer was a lot of fun doing the Zodiac Summer Read A Thon with my girls leading up to Thirteen Rising. If you haven’t read this series yet now is your chance. All four books are out as of today so grab them and binge read them this fall. They would also make a wonderful holiday gift for any middle grade or YA reading teen. Today I’m diving into the Zodiac world and can’t wait to see what is in store.

About the Book: Romina Russell’s epic sci-fi fantasy series reaches its breathtaking conclusion with this fourth and final novel.

The master has been unmasked. Rho’s world has been turned upside down. With her loved ones in peril and all the stars set against her, can the young Guardian from House Cancer muster the strength to keep fighting? Or has she finally found her match in a master whose ambition to rule knows no limits?

Thank you Penguin Young Readers for sending us the Zodiac Series. We have loved and enjoyed the Summer 2017 Read A Thon so much. All thoughts and opinions are our own and are not influenced by the free books.

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Wild Bird

by Wendelin Van Draanen

This book jumped right into it never stopped till the last page. This book is about a 14-year-old addict that her family has no other choice but to place their daughter in a desert rehab where it is sink or swim. I can’t even imagine what that family had to go to that made them feel like this was their only choice. I also was so sad to see Wren’s age was 14.  I like that she had her being young because it happens and even young teen middle school aged kids can get hooked on drugs and alcohol. Wren was the main focus of the book and while Wild was about finding ones self after the death of a loved one. Wild Bird wasn’t much different in the fact that Wren had to find herself again. She was lost and in a way her old self was no longer. She had to rediscover what made her happy and the old Wren. The program was a tough love military like program but for many this is just what they need to get clean. You will laugh, cry, cheer and shake your head at times throughout this book. The author really lets your inside Wren’s head and her thinking process. In all honesty I think Wren really handled being thrown into this very well. Many of the day to day staples in the old life she took for granted threw away were things she had to fight for to gain back. This book shows what it is like to bottom out and having to realize that sometimes the hardest thing is asking for help, rediscovering yourself and being brutally honest with yourself. Wild Bird should be a book all parents read. I know it’s geared towards teens but I really think parents need to read this as well. I was totally 100% invested in Wren and her story, I’m so happy I got to read this book and know it will be a re-read as well as one I recommend to all looking for a heartwarming and heartbreaking book.

About the Book: 3:47 a.m. That’s when they come for Wren Clemmens. She’s hustled out of her house and into a waiting car, then a plane, and then taken on a forced march into the desert. This is what happens to kids who’ve gone so far off the rails, their parents don’t know what to do with them anymore. This is wilderness therapy camp. Eight weeks of survivalist camping in the desert. Eight weeks to turn your life around. Yeah, right.

The Wren who arrives in the Utah desert is angry and bitter, and blaming everyone but herself. But angry can’t put up a tent. And bitter won’t start a fire. Wren’s going to have to admit she needs help if she’s going to survive.

Thank you Knopf Books for Young Readers for allowing me to read Wild Bird. All thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced by the free book.

Black Moon

Zodiac Series book 3

by Romina Russell

First off I have to say this series has the most beautiful covers ever! I mean look at them, they are works of art and the designer Vanessa Han is seriously talented. If you want to see more of her work check out her site. I mean I might the books she designed covers for just because they are so pretty. 🙂

 

OK now on to book 3 of this amazing series. I mean this series just keeps getting better and better with each book. The world building and characters are so well developed and nothing is forgotten from other books. The series is consistent and keeps building from one book to another. The series I really can’t wait to see how this series ends. Lots of big events happen in Black Moon, all leading up to the final book Thirteen Rising. A lot goes on in this book. Rho really shows all of herself in Black Moon she matures and really grows as a character. So much is exposed in this book and so much comes to the surface. If you are looking for a series to gift to an upper middle school and YA reader than I would seriously suggest giving the Zodiac series a try. This is a science fiction – fantasy series that somewhat parallels stuff that is happening right now in the world right now. Thirteen Rising comes out 2.5 weeks on August 29th. So if you or your YA reader like to wait for the whole series to be out before you start than your wait is almost over.

Thank you Penguin for sending me a copy of Black Moon. All thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced by the free book.

Wandering Star

Zodiac ReadAThon

by Romina Russell

Giveaway alert: Enter for a chance to win either one (1) grand prize set of Romina Russell’s Zodiac Series in paperback, including Zodiac, Wandering Star, and Black Moon (32.97) or to be one (1) of five (5) second place winners to receive a copy of Zodiac by Romina Russell (ARV: $10.99 each). NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on June 26th, 2017 and 12:00 AM on July 17, 2017.  Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about July 21, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.

I really do think this one was better than the first. So many times as a series progresses, especially when there is 4 a second book kinda drags. This is not the case with Wandering Star – it was right up there with Zodiac and I think it might have even been better. In Wandering Star you can feel the story getting more involved and diving deeper into the action packed Zodiac world. Rho’s character really faces some obstacles and not just the normal teenage ones. She faces those to but her world has been turned upside down and she has been stripped of her title. I think she does the most growing in this book. There are a few twist and turns that leave you with “Wait, did I just read that right?” moments. There is some budding romance going on but this book is more than that. I can’t wait to continue this story with Black Moon. Will it be right up there with Zodiac and Wandering Star? Or will it be even better?

About the Book:

 Rho is ready to live a quiet life until Ochus appears to her, bearing a cryptic message that leaves her with no choice but to fight and she embarks on a journey through a new set of Houses that reveal much more about the Galaxy and herself.

I was going to create some really cool cookies for this book but we didn’t eat the last “tester” batch of decorated cookies in time. Fingers crossed I create them for Thirteen Rising. We did however find some really cool Nebula prints that would look really pretty printed and framed and placed on a wall. I just did a quick google search of Nebulas and found the ones they want for the room color redo. This one kinda reminded us of the Wandering Star cover a little. We got a poster print at Staples for under 12 bucks! 🙂

SCHEDULE:
 
Week One:
July 17 – Bookiemoji
July 18 – 
July 19 – 
July 20 – Picture Books to YA
July 21 – The Book Nut
Week Two:
July 24 In Wonderland
July 25 The Hardcover Lover
July 25 – The Eater of Books!
July 26 –
July 28 –
Week Three:
July 31 –
August 1 – YA and Wine
August 2 –
August 3 –
August 4 – Four Violet
Twitter Chat: August 6th @ 8PM EST Hosted by @buttermybooks @ ButterMyBooks

Zodiac ReadAThon

At the dawn of time, there were 13 Houses in the Zodiac Galaxy. Now only 12 remain….

by Romina Russell

Giveaway alert: Enter for a chance to win either one (1) grand prize set of Romina Russell’s Zodiac Series in paperback, including Zodiac, Wandering Star, and Black Moon (32.97) or to be one (1) of five (5) second place winners to receive a copy of Zodiac by Romina Russell (ARV: $10.99 each). NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on June 26th, 2017 and 12:00 AM on July 17, 2017.  Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about July 21, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.

Looking for some fun summer reading. Zodiac is a great series that might just be your ticket to getting your middle grade reader or high school reader opening a book over the summer. Book 4 of the series is getting ready to come out and Romina Russell and Penguin Teen are doing a fun readathon working up to its release. We’ve all read Zodiac in this house and can’t wait to read the whole series. Funny thing is this book came out before all the talk and addition of the 13th zodiac sign. I don’t know maybe there always was one but it’s new to me. So we found that kinda funny that before it became official her book already had it! Thirteen Rising comes out August 29 which is the day before her birthday so perfect timing. We are having fun with the space themed series. You got space – constellations – fantasy – action – weather disasters that are destroying the houses – and a strong kick butt girl character Rho! I love this series and even better it’s a great series for even your middle grade reader. While the main character is a girl it’s a space fantasy so even boys might like it. Go to your library and  grab copies of: Zodiac – Wandering Star and Black Moon so you and your readers can participate in the read along. Then you will be ready for Thirteen Rising on August 29th. While we are not 100% sure that is the last book of the series – we kinda hope it’s not. My high school reader likes to wait and binge reads the whole series when the final book comes out.This is the one series that broke my daughters rule on waiting. She devoured Zodiac and said she might not wait till July 17th to start Wandering Star. 🙂

About The Book:

Rhoma Grace is a 16-year-old student from House Cancer with an unusual way of reading the stars. While her classmates use measurements to make accurate astrological predictions, Rho can’t solve for ‘x’ to save her life—so instead, she looks up at the night sky and makes up stories.

When a violent blast strikes the moons of Cancer, sending its ocean planet off-kilter and killing thousands of citizens—including its beloved Guardian—Rho is more surprised than anyone when she is named the House’s new leader. But, a true Cancerian who loves her home fiercely and will protect her people no matter what, Rho accepts.

Zodiac Constellation Cool Wall Art

We were going to make Zodiac based room decor but I haven’t finished it yet. Why didn’t I finish it yet? Because I’ve been reading – baking  and binge watching SuperGirl and the Great British Baking Show with my girls. Why didn’t anyone tell me those shows are so good and cute. Anyway I didn’t get around to finishing it. This is the project we are doing it’s by Martha Stewart but it’s not that hard and I think it’s going to turn out great! 🙂

Zodiac Constellation Wall Art source and instructions

ZODIAC REREAD SCHEDULE:
Week One:
June 26 – Paper Trail YA – Spotlight
June 26 – Live Love Read – Spotlight & Zodiac Magnets
June 26 – Novel Knight – Spotlight
June 27 – The Book Lounge
June 28 – YA and Wine – Review & Wine
June 29 – Life Within The Pages – Review
June 29 – In Wonderland – Book Look
June 30 – The Book Talk – Spotlight
June 30 – The Heart of a Book Blogger – Mood Board
Week Two
July 3 – Picture Books to YA – Review & Zodiac Decor
July 4 – Wandering Bark Books – Spotlight
July 5 – Teacher of YA
July 6 – The Hermit Librarian – Review & Zodiac Playlist
July 6 – Swoony Boys Podcast – Review & Book Look
July 7 – Mundie Moms
July 8 – Quirky and Peculiar – Spotlight
Week Three
July 10 – A Perfection Called Books – Cancer Mood Board
July 10 – The Biblio Life – Spotlight
July 10 – The Book Vortex – Spotlight
July 11 – Fly Leaf Chronicles – Review
July 11 – The Book Nut – Reading Habits By Your Zodiac
July 12 – Resch Reads and Reviews – Zodiac Inspired Makeup Look
July 13 – Four Violet
July 13 – Rants and Raves of a Bibliophile – Zodiac Inspired Snacks
July 14 – Novel Novice – Styled By Books
July 15 – The Books Buzz – Zodiac & Galaxy Nail Art
 
Twitter Chat: July 16th @ 8PM EST Hosted by Brittany @ Brittany’s Book Rambles

Doctor Who (meets Mr Men and Little Miss)

originated by Roger Hargreaves

written and illustrated by Adam Hargreaves

I have to say I’ve never actually read or even looked at a Mr Men or Little Miss book. I guess when my bookworms were little they never grabbed copies from the library. I don’t remember having them in my Pre-K classroom but I might have that was a very very long time ago. I am a huge Doctor Who fan – well I’m a big David Tennant and Matt Smith as the Doctor fan.  I started watching when the 9th Doctor came on and while he was OK I was happy when he made the switch. Anyway back to these cute books.

I was sent Dr First – Dr Fourth – Dr Eleventh and Dr Twelfth. I really wish they had a Dr Tenth but oh well maybe it will be in the works. These books are made for Dr Who fans from older readers to adult. While they are picture books I’m not sure they would hold the younger picture book readers and listeners attention. I really love the Dr Eleventh book the most. The author really captured Matt Smith’s characters personality and I could hear his voice and River Songs as I was reading. We have this on display with our adipose, Tenth and Eleventh doctors wands and the Tardis.  While I read the First, Fourth and Twelfth there wasn’t the connection of watching and loving them for me. I still enjoyed the books but missed that connection to the story. We kept the Dr Eleventh book and passed on the other 3 to a big Dr Who fan we know. 🙂 They were really happy and loved them very much.

If you know of a big Dr Who fan that has loved them through all the long years these little books would be perfect for them. They would really enjoy them and they would be cute in a Dr Who display.

Thank you so much BBC and Penguin Young Readers for sending us these 4 Dr Who books. All thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced by the free book.

Orbiting Jupiter

by Gary D Schmidt

 

 

I’ve been seeing this book at my library for a few years now, and I’ve grabbed it many times but never read it before returning it. Well I finally grabbed it and sat down and read it in one sitting. Oh my gosh this book wrecked me! I had so many feels while reading this heartwarming and heartbreaking book!! I hope it wins many book awards because they would all be very well deserved. I was immediately drawn into the characters and felt like I had known them for a long time. Jack telling the story of his foster-brother Joseph and how Joseph’s only real goal was to find his daughter Jupiter was what intrigued me about this book. It is told by a 12-year-old boy  about a 14-year-old boy. That right there I’m not sure has ever been done, add the fact that they are just babies themselves. Joseph had a bad home life, heck he had the worse home life and got put into foster care. After a few tumbles he ended up with a loving opening family that ended up being his forever home. He wasn’t going to settle down till he got Jupiter back even if it meant doing it on his own. The book takes a drastic turn and I pretty much bawled through the last half of the book. Grab a copy of Orbiting Jupiter you will not be disappointed!!

About the Book: 

Jack, 12, tells the gripping story of Joseph, 14, who joins his family as a foster child. Damaged in prison, Joseph wants nothing more than to find his baby daughter, Jupiter, whom he has never seen. When Joseph has begun to believe he’ll have a future, he is confronted by demons from his past that force a tragic sacrifice.

Awards & Honors: Capitol Choices 2016
Publishers Weekly Best Children’s Books of 2015, Middle Grade
Booklist Best Young Adult Books of 2015
ALA Notable Books for Children 2016, Older Readers
VOYA’s Perfect Tens 2015; 2016 Winner, Notable Books for a Global Society
CCBC Choices 2016, Fiction for Young Adults
2015 Cybils Awards Nomination, Young Adult Fiction
ILA Young Adults’ Choices, 2016 Reading List
YALSA 2017 Best Fiction for Young Adults
Children’s Book Committee Bank Street College of Education Best Children’s Books of 2016, Coming of Age